Modern Day Funerals: To Infinity & Beyond

Let’s state the obvious for a moment… it’s 2014 and the world is changing. A part of this changing world is the funeral industry. Funerals 50 years ago were not the same as they are today, and 50 years in the future they won’t be like they are now.

With today’s modern times some are choosing to have a funeral unlike anyone else: whether it’s burials at sea, getting launched into space, or the not so crazy, but not as popular as ground burials – being cremated. No, you did not read that wrong. Getting shot into space is an option (more on this later).


Let’s start with burials at sea. What is it? This is the disposal of human remains in the ocean, normally from a ship or boat. According to there are 5 requirements in order for burials at sea to occur:

  • First, human remains shall be prepared for burial at sea and buried in accordance to requirements set in place by the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, or civil authority charged with the responsibility for making such arrangements.
  • Second, “burial at sea of human remains that are not cremated shall take place at least 3 nautical miles from land and in water at least 600 feet deep.” It must also be ensured that the human remains sink to the bottom “rapidly and permanently.”
  • Third, the cremated remains shall be buried in or on ocean waters without depth limitations, however it must take place at least 3 nautical miles from land.
  • Fourth, if loved ones choose to place flowers and wreaths at the burial site, these flowers and wreaths must consist of materials that are “readily decomposable in the marine environment.”
  • Lastly, “all burials conducted shall be reported within 30 days to the EPA Region in writing.

[Visit for more information on burials at sea.]


Let’s get back to the funeral where a body gets launched into space. This sounds so far-fetched, but is actually a rare burial event that has been taking place since 1992. Celestis, Inc. and Elysium Space are two companies that offer space burials. Interested? Prices with Celestis, Inc. start at $995 USD.

Science fiction author Neil R. Jones proposed the concept of using conventional rockets to launch remains into space in 1931. The cremated remains are not scattered into space, however they remain inside the spacecraft until the spacecraft either (A) re-enters the Earth’s atmosphere and burns up upon re-entry; (B) parachutes back to Earth for recovery (suborbital missions); or (C) reaches its final, extraterrestrial destination (e.g., the Moon). Only a sample of remains is launched in order to make the service affordable.


Now, let’s talk about cremations. According to, cremations are the “form of final disposition in which the deceased is reduced to ashes by flames.” These are far more common than burials at sea and being launched into space, however cremations are still not as popular as the typical ground burial.

The cremation process begins with the deceased body being placed in a rigid combustible container then into a cremation chamber. Inside the chamber temperatures reach between 1600 and 1800 degrees Fahrenheit and remain in there for 2-2 ½ hours. Inside, the body evaporates due to the high temperatures until only bone fragments remain. These bone fragments are further reduced to fit inside an urn or to make them an acceptable size to scatter. Families then receive these ashes.

UrnMemorialLgHere at Lamcraft we have an exciting new cremation product that just launched today (get it?). Urn Memorials and Ribbons have been designed to provide a keepsake for the family of a loved one who has been cremated. The individual’s photo or a small print-out of a favorite quote, dates or other information may be inserted. The Urn Memorial is perfect for those cremation services when inurnment of the urn has been arranged. The laminated memorial can be removed from the urn and be returned to the family as a keepsake.


The Urn Memorials have been sized to laminate any other information printed on one half of a standard prayer card measuring 2 ½” x 4 ¼”. Or, simply print the photo or information on a piece of paper and trim to fit. Front and backsides of the Urn Memorials are identical. 100 Urn Memorials are included in each carton.


To attach the memorial to the urn, we offer 100-yard spools of satin ribbon (1/4” wide). Each spool allows up to 1 yard of ribbon per Urn Memorial and is available in silver or gold satin. Ribbons may be tied in front or behind urn.


Matching these Urn Memorials and Ribbons are the Lamcraft Premium Memorial Bookmarks and products. See them here:

For more information on the Urn Memorials please visit: or call us at 1-800-821-1333.

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